When is fiberglass too far gone to fix? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-01-2011, 12:27 PM   #1
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When is fiberglass too far gone to fix?

I bought the awful looking Compact Jr. (black) that some of you might have seen here late last fall. I have all the windows and door out and the glassed down roof removed. I wondered why the trailer didn't seem to have as much headroom as my useable one. When I took out the carpet and the waterlogged side wood floor pieces I discovered that the trailer has sagged, cracked, and been sawed through by the fore and aft metal supports on the frame. The bottom of the fiberglass body is an inch lower than the top of the frame at the back, with holes where the body was rubbed through and cracks to the edge of the glass. At least one of the outer cross braces under the front is seriously bent downward. The lower front panels are pretty much junk, I had planned on fixing them by glassing in a panel and painting with a stone guard to cover any mistakes I made, but they are also badly damaged at the point where the glass body meets the frame. All this combined with at least 6 dozen screw/bolt holes, random vent holes, and all the extra gelcoat and bondo that needs to be removed from the pop top. I've watched the fiberglass repair videos but never done it myself. I know I would have to take the egg off of the frame, have the frame fixed (weld new supports on?), and then put it all back together. I'll have to pay for the frame repair but I can't swing the glass repair too. All the window glass is gone, parts of the windows are missing, and the door is a total loss. Is this thing even fixable? Thoughts? Comments? Spare parts for sale?
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Old 07-01-2011, 04:22 PM   #2
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IMHO: The restoration issue depends on
1) how dedicated you are to your trailer, and
2) how deep your pockets are

I couldn't offer any other advice because the final (bottom line) is its TOTALY up to you (and whom-ever you may be sharing your trailer with)!!
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Old 07-01-2011, 08:04 PM   #3
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Doug hit the nail on the head.
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Old 07-01-2011, 08:11 PM   #4
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Hi: CeliaL... I think I'd part that trailer out. At least you might recoup some of your purchase price that way. That's probably not what you wanted to hear tho!!!
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie
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Old 07-03-2011, 07:38 PM   #5
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Celia- Sounds like it is repairable... Fiberglass repair is not something to be afraid of (it's just messy and sticky) If there is any of the original fiberglass there, one can bond new stuff to it. Try a little spot first. As your confidence grows, you'll be amazed what can be stuck back together. One of the downfalls of the CJ style trailers are their underdesigned, weak frame. You will def have to add crossmembers. Larry
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Old 07-10-2011, 12:56 AM   #6
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Celia- Sounds like it is repairable... Fiberglass repair is not something to be afraid of (it's just messy and sticky) If there is any of the original fiberglass there, one can bond new stuff to it. Try a little spot first. As your confidence grows, you'll be amazed what can be stuck back together. One of the downfalls of the CJ style trailers are their underdesigned, weak frame. You will def have to add crossmembers. Larry
It's not tough as it seems. Here's a real good site to learn how to do it
glass clown . I used paper cups to mix small batches at a time and Popsicle sticks to mix and a apply. A bag of cheap Latex gloves sure help keep the mess of your hands
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Old 07-15-2011, 05:31 PM   #7
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Thanks all, I really wanted to save this trailer but it was just too far gone. The frame is bent down almost 2" from the axle back, there are cracks/tears most of the way through the frame in the front, the whole thing is bent or twisted out of square (the axle is about 2" out of square from the ball), all the side supports are badly bent down, and the axle needs replacing. If the glass egg had been any good I might have had a new frame made, but pieces of it broke off in my hands while we were removing it. So the whole bottom and up the sides would have had to be replaced. Plus all the work already mentioned. Maybe with a setup like Larry's it would be do-able but home for me is my first egg or whatever friend or family member will take me in. I'll keep looking for another to make into my perfect full timer...
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Old 07-15-2011, 07:43 PM   #8
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Man If I was not so far from you I would come over and help. I have done A lot of welding and glassing. I am far from a expert but It all sounds fixable to me! I have built tear drop camping trailers in my drive way with no shop just a tarp.
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